How Do I Select a Divorce Attorney?
Most importantly, you need to find someone that you are comfortable dealing with, that you trust. Besides that, the main things you need to consider in selecting a divorce attorney are:
- Find out how long your attorney has been handling divorce cases. You don’t want to be an attorney’s first case, do you? An attorney does not become good by reading about the law; it takes experience to make an attorney good. Also find out how much of the attorney’s practice is in dealing with divorce. Just because an attorney has been around for a while, it does not mean they are experienced with all the intricacies of divorce law.
- If you have children, find out if your attorney has experience as a Guardian ad Litem or Parenting Coordinator. A Guardian ad Litem interviews the children, parents, schools, mental health professionals, and anyone else of importance in a child’s life. A parenting coordinator has specialized training to help them understand the dynamics of high conflict families and the impact of conflict on children. These roles provide an attorney with special insight into how divorce affects families which can be helpful in resolving your case.
- If you have complex financial issues in your case, be certain your attorney is knowledgeable about the financial issues in your case, or works with financial professionals who are.
Interview Before You Choose
- An initial consultation can give you insight as to how comfortable you will be in dealing with your attorney. You will be working closely with your attorney, and trusting them with important aspects of your future, so you want to make sure you are retaining an attorney that is a good fit for your goals.
- Ask the attorney what their policy is on returning phone calls. When you are dealing with stressful issues, it is important to have an attorney who will give you the respect of timely responding to your needs.
Select an Attorney That Offers You Options
You have options in how you proceed with your divorce. Litigation is not the only option. Less than 90% of litigated divorces actually go to trial. Most are resolved at an earlier stage through agreement of the parties. So go with an attorney who understands your options.